While in hospital after breaking his ankle during the shooting of Fritz Lang's Woman in the Moon, Fischinger designed a new technique: he drew with charcoal on white paper, then filmed it and used the positive as negative.
Thanks to his engineering skills he synchronised the drawings to phonograph records released by Electrola, scratching an “X” on the disc and calculating the resulting clicks with a slide-rule.
That's how his incredible Studies were born. By 1930 optical sound-on-film process took over and he shifted to this technique while working on his Study nº 6. His Study nº 9 is based on Brahm's sixth Hungarian Dance.
Brahms | "Hungarian Dance"
1900 | Gelnhausen, Germany / +1967 · USA
Inspired by Walter Ruttmann's work, Fischinger began experimenting with coluored liquids and three·dimensional modeling materials such as wax and clay.
In 1924 he was hired by Louis Seel to produce satirical cartoons that tended toward mature audiences. He also made abstract films and tests of his own, trying new and different techniques including the use of multiple projectors.
After the Nazi coup d'etat in 1933 abstract art was declared “degenerate”, so Fischinger had to find himself some tricks to keep on working on his non·figurative works. He made several films secretly [as his "Composition in blue"] and have been imprisoned on several occasions. He moved to Hollywood in 1936 with his wife and son where, despite suffering integration and financial problems, he continued to create abstract and comercial films as well as several oil paintings.
In 1940 he designed the film based on Bach's "Fugue" for Walt Disney's Fantasia, and by the early 1950's he started experimenting also with 3-D stereo film.
According to William Moritz, he held a dual fascination with ancient spiritual cosmology and new scientific discoveries of atoms and cosmic space phenomena. This duality was somehow always present in his imagery.
He died in 1967 in Los Angeles·CA.